11th December, 2014
An FCT High Court on Wednesday ordered the Inspector General of Police, Director-General of State Security Services and Controller General of Nigeria Customs Services to confiscate Obasanjo’s book from public vendors.
Justice Valentine Ashi, gave the order after former President Olusegun Obasanjo allegedly went ahead to publish his book titled “My Watch” in spite of a court order made on Dec. 5, restraining him from making the publication.
“I am of the view that the defendant having gone ahead to publish the book, he should therefore show cause within 21 days of the order served on him on why he should not be punished for contempt of court.
“The Inspector-General of Police, the Director-General of State Security Services and the Controller General of Nigeria Customs Services are hereby directed to recover the book from sales vendors,” the Judge ordered.
He directed that the book should be kept with the registrar of the court pending the determination of the suit.
Ashi also restrained the defendant from further printing, publishing or circulating the book “My Watch” which, he said “touches on the subject matter of the suit before the court.”
Earlier, counsel to Obasanjo, Mr Realwan Okpanachi, told the court that the book was published before the order was granted.
Okpanachi argued that the book had been in circulation since November and the order was made on 5 December.
The Counsel to Buruji Kashamu, Mr Alex Izinyo, SAN, submitted that the defendant’s application was a calculated attempt to deceive the court.
Izinyo argued that the defendant admitted in his motion papers that the book was published on 10 November and in another paragraph, it was also stated that the book was published on 2 November.
“My lord, the burden of proof lay with the defendant to show the court three volumes of the book,” he said.
Ashi adjourned to January 13 and 14, 2015, for hearing of the substantive case.
NAN recalls that the plaintiff Mr Buruji Kashamu, had earlier dragged former President Olusegun Obasanjo before the court for libel.
NAN further recalls that Kashamu alleged that the former addressed him as ex-convict in the letter he wrote to President Goodluck Jonathan titled, “Before it is too late”.